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Massey, Zachary David

by R. A. Massey, Jr., 1991

14 Nov. 1864–13 July 1923

Zachary David Massey, educator, physician, and Tennessee legislator and congressman, was born at Big Pine, Madison County, the son of Robert Hardee and Rena Brown Massey. He spent the first twenty-two years of his life in North Carolina, where he attended public school in Marshall. From 1882 to 1886 he taught in the Madison County schools. In 1886 he enrolled in Louisville Medical College, Louisville, Ky., and after graduation in 1888 began a practice in Wear's Valley, Sevier County, Tenn. During 1889 Dr. Massey sometimes had a captive clientele, for he served as physician and surgeon to the Tennessee State Penitentiary. In the same year he became a captain and surgeon in the local Sixth U.S. Volunteer Infantry, and during the Spanish-American War (1898) he saw brief service as an assistant surgeon in the army.

From 1899 to 1904 Massey served as postmaster in Sevierville in Sevier County. A Republican, he became involved in East Tennessee politics and was elected in 1904 and 1906 to the state senate, where he represented the counties of Blount, Cocke, Hamblen, Jefferson, and Sevier. In November 1910, after the death of Congressman Walter P. Brownlow, Massey was elected to complete his unexpired term from 5 Dec. 1910 to 3 Mar. 1911. While in Congress he was appointed to the committee on weights, measures, and pensions and to the committee on pensions for retired veterans.

After completing Brownlow's term, Massey resumed his medical practice in Sevier County. During this time he became a member of the board of managers of the National Soldiers Home in eastern Tennessee. In 1922 he was again elected to the state senate but served in only one session prior to his death. He also was involved in real estate and was a member of the Baptist church and a Mason.

On 25 Nov. 1886 Massey married Sallie Mullendore, and they became the parents of five children: Roy, Wanita, Mrs. Charles C. Pack, Mrs. T. A. Wood, and Mrs. W. H. Wilson. He was buried in Shiloh Cemetery, Sevierville.


Biog. Dir. Am. Cong. (1971).

Biographical Directory of the Tennessee General Assembly, vol. 3 (1975).

Congressional Record, 61st Cong., vol. 3 (10 Jan. 1911).

New York Times, 9 Nov. 1910.

Senate Journal of the Sixty-third General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, vol. 1 (1923).

Additional Resources:

"Massey, Zachary David, (1864 - 1923)." Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Washington, D.C.: The Congress. (accessed July 2, 2014).


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